Berlin – Life is a Cabaret

In the 1920’s and early 1930’s Berlin was renowned for its cultural diversity, liberal attitudes and decadence which inspired the Academy Award winning movie “Cabaret” starring Liza Minnelli and Michael York.

After a tumultuous 20th Century history with the Nazi era in the 30’s and 40’s followed by the communist domination of the East, Berlin lived as a divided city until the fall of the Wall in 1989.

The city has well and truly burst back on the scene as a political, cultural and culinary world city. One can spend a week there and not cover all the attractions such as the palaces of Potsdam, remnants of the Berlin Wall, the Pergamon Museum on Museum Island, the Reichstag Building and of course the symbol of reunification, the Brandenburg Gate.

Significantly cheaper than Paris or London and with outstanding hotel infrastructure this is a European city to consider for your next conference or incentive.

Images below include a function at a the historic Wasserwerk (Waterworks), typical of Berlin’s industrial night scene and of course a “Cabaret” themed Gala Dinner at the Kempinski Hotel.

We might add that Adlon Kempinski Hotel Berlin, located adjacent to the magnificent Brandenburg Gate rated as one of the best ever for some of our regular conference attendees. Amongst many attributes, a stand out was the liberal amount of champagne and caviar on the breakfast buffet, it doesn’t get much better.

For more information on events in Berlin contact Anne Gray 1300 739 958


Poland – Send them to the Salt Mines

This might not sound a likely gala dinner venue, but the Wieliczka Salt Mines located in a spa town just outside Krakow, Poland, are bound to surprise and amaze your event attendees.

For our client event, our group thought they were simply being taken on a tour of the Salt Mines prior to dinner. These mines are a major tourist attraction and UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The tour is extensive and at each turn you’ll be amazed, underground lakes, grottoes, even a cathedral as well as a spectacular sound and light display.

After being blown away by these amazing sights, imagine the surprise when you enter an elegant underground cavern set for a three course banquet. Even the chandeliers are made from salt crystals!

Krakow is a real gem and can be compared to cities like Prague. The old town is completely walled as you step back in time with the jewel in the crown being the 40,000 sq metre Main Square, the largest medieval square in Europe dating back to the 13th century.

Combined with Warsaw which is an amazing city full of contrasts and an excellent culinary scene, this makes for an excellent conference or incentive destination.

Bonus – Zloty’s not Euros. Poland has stuck to its original currency, the Zloty, and not adopted the Euro, so it is an excellent value for money destination.

For more info, contact Mike on 1300 739 958.


The World’s Most Geologically Active Island Destination is…?

In the last post we extolled the virtues of Queenstown as an exciting incentive or conference destination, so you might think we’re referring to New Zealand when we talk about the world’s most geologically active island?

Wrong…..

We are talking about the other side of the planet – Iceland!

Iceland is a great place to consider for an incentive reward or conference when you have been everywhere else in the world and you’re looking for something completely different.

About one third larger than Tasmania, Iceland sits mid-Atlantic where the tectonic plates of the Americas and Europe collide, making it the most geologically and volcanically active island on earth.  It is home to some 30 active volcanoes.

Cruising is an ideal way to see the incredible sights of this sparsely populated island. Our group of approximately 60 participants cruised aboard Ponant Cruises “Le Boreal”, an intimate and luxury vessel accommodating approximately 250 passengers. Being a French cruise line, as one would expect, the food, wine and hospitality on board were excellent.

In June, the sun barely dips below the horizon well after midnight providing a short twilight before rising again an hour or two later. Photographers will love it as you have the most perfect light conditions and the clearest skies imaginable. The dramatic landscapes with geysers, glaciers, waterfalls, snow-capped mountains, lush green pastures and arid deserts are quite breathtaking

It’s not as hard to get to as you might imagine, with regular daily flights from London plus all the Scandinavian capitals. Groups can be booked on board cruise ships and a full ship charter is a great option for larger groups. To find out more contact Mike on 03 9535 3600 or mobile 0438 73 2366.

 

 

“When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life”

Delegates arrived in London on a beautiful spring day in May. Londoners were still shaking off the last vestiges of winter and only two weeks before there was snow on the ground! There is something about sunny blue skies and warm temperatures that brings out the best in a destination – and London is no exception.

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We enjoyed a glorious cruise down the Thames River, from Westminster to Greenwich, which gives you a completely different perspective of the city.

While in Greenwich, the curators of the National Maritime Museum had set out a display of antipodean naval documents and artefacts from Captain James Cook and Matthew Flinders – especially for our group.

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Other highlights of the conference included exclusive access to Australia House for a cocktail reception in the Great Hall with a presentation from the Deputy High Commissioner, Andrew Todd. Mid conference, delegates dressed in their finest 60’s gear and rocked to an extremely good Beatle’s tribute band – The Upbeat Beatles.

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The Gala banquet event was held in the stunning Guildhall, a medieval Grade I listed landmark. This was a truly grand setting and is used for glittering banquets in honour of visiting Heads of State, royal occasions and receptions for major historical anniversaries. Had we been a week earlier, we would have been tossed out as the Guildhall was used for a reception to honour Baroness Maggie Thatcher’s memory.

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The education program was a mix of Australian speakers interspersed with locally sourced experts. This made for a varied program and an opportunity for our delegates to hear what was happening on the international scene.

After nearly a week of fine weather, we were being accredited with bringing the fine weather to London. It was certainly uncanny then that on the day of departure, the cold winds and heavy rain once again blew in and returned London to its usual grey state. Whatever the case, we enjoyed everything that London had to offer – and not just the weather. As Samuel Johnson once said “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford”.